The intersection between HR strategy and HR technology

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SystematicHR’s Thoughts for 2008

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I suppose that I do need to put together a list of things I’m especially interested in this year. Many of these are already trends. Some of these will never be, but are things perhaps only I am interested in. Other ideas might actually emerge in 2008.

  1. The War for Talent: People will realize that there is no war for talent. In fact, this war is just a misnomer for our inability to develop the best. Therefore we have to try and steal the best from elsewhere. Rather than calling it a war for talent, why don’t we just concentrate on talent management?
  2. Innovation: I’ll continue to be interested in innovation and collaboration models. First of all, they are interesting topics. Second, and more importantly, these are concrete areas where the workforce strategy meets up with the business strategy. It’s our best shot in HR to gain greater access to the business. We should be paying more attention to these and other opportunities like them.
  3. Web 2.0: Yes, I’m sick of it too. I don’t want to talk about it, I don’t want vendors to talk about it, and I certainly don’t want to hear anything about Web 3.0. However, I do want to SEE what everyone is going to do with this. The re-visioning of how applications work and create more usable spaces for practitioners, employees and managers is very exciting. Let’s cut the jargon and just make it happen.
  4. HR Service Delivery: We seem to be focusing on a few too many things. Between technology implementations, workforce planning, the “war” for talent, and other initiatives, some of us have forgotten that our HR function and service delivery model are not working. If the core is not working, all of our strategies are just band aids. It’s time to look at service delivery again.
  5. The Vendor Space: I just can’t resist this. I’m looking for more consolidation as well as more innovation. While we need to service delivery model to be effective, the vendors are also providing us with incremental improvements every time they have a new release. We just can’t ignore the benefit they provide to the HR function, and I’ll continue to watch them closely.

There you go. That’s my short list, and while I’m sure everyone else will come out with a list too, these 5 should sum it up for me. Let’s have a great year.

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5 responses to “SystematicHR’s Thoughts for 2008”

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  2. J. WIlliam Tincup Avatar

    Double Dubs

    You nailed it. This is my list for 2008 as well. Nice job.


  3. R Bhatt Avatar
    R Bhatt

    I am an avid reader of your articles and insights provided by your site are truly interesting. Just wnated to say thanks for your analysis of the HR technology and trends..:)

  4. Sean Rehder Avatar

    Amen, brother.

  5. Lexy Martin Avatar

    Nice list….and I agree with all but the Web 2.0. There needs to be some “name” for new technologies to get people’s attention that there’s potential value, so while Web 2.0 is not a great name, it at least provides that name, that focus. If there’s no name, no focus.
    I also want to add some emphasis to the service delivery item. In our annual survey (, we indicate an adoption level of around 50% for employee and manager self service. While 50% adoption means the market is “mature”…there are still 50% of organizations with over 500 employees who have not yet adopted self service. These are the “late majority” and “laggards” and helping them adopt will be considerably harder than the first 50%. PLUS, with the economic situation, the business case for improved service delivery becomes HARD, but that’s what the vendors and we consultants will need to do to help the late adopters.
    And, perhaps one item you left out:
    Going global. Maybe this is part of HR Service Delivery, but there are many global organizations that have done a good job with ERP, self service, talent management, etc. in their US operations only, but have yet to spread these solutions globally. Lots of change management work needed for that.

  6. systematicHR Avatar

    You’re right about global. Global reporting, global policies, global HR function design, global anything. From the vendor side, there is also much development to go through, and for HRO organizations as well, this is a major growth area. It’s a huge need in global organizations and obviously a major opportunities for consultants like us.